USA Funds Awards $2.5 Million in Higher Education Grants

Funding promotes preparation for, access to and success in higher education

May 17, 2011, 10:47 ET from USA Funds

INDIANAPOLIS, May 17, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- USA Funds®, a nonprofit organization that helps American families benefit from postsecondary education, announces the award of more than $2.5 million in grants for the quarter ending March 31, 2011. USA Funds awarded 30 grants to organizations in 10 states and the District of Columbia.

"These grants support programs that improve students' awareness of and preparation for postsecondary education, promote access to high-quality higher education opportunities, and increase student persistence and completion of their programs of study," said Robert C. Ballard, USA Funds senior vice president, Access and Outreach. "These programs are in line with the USA Funds mission to enhance preparation for, access to and success in postsecondary education specifically for underserved, low-income middle and high school students; students of color; and first-generation postsecondary students."

Highlights of USA Funds' grant-making include the following awards of $25,000 or more:

  • Bottom Line (Jamaica Plain, Mass.) — $1 million to expand programming that provides one-on-one guidance to students in academic, employment, financial and personal areas during college.

  • Starfish Initiative (Indianapolis) — $1 million to assist students in preparing for postsecondary education access through mentoring relationships and to extend its outreach to participants who are in college to support their persistence in and completion of their higher education programs.

  • YMCA of Greater Indianapolis Urban Mission Branch (Indianapolis) — $100,000 to support programming that addresses critical college readiness issues affecting youth and teens in central Indiana.

  • University of Nevada Foundation (Reno, Nev.) — $100,000 to support mentoring and tutoring for students who are less likely to graduate from high school and encourage them to enroll in college through the Dean's Future Scholars program.

  • Riley Children's Foundation (Indianapolis) — $72,000 to assist hospitalized students in continuing and completing their education.

  • State Higher Education Executive Officers (Boulder, Colo.) — $40,000 to support a professional development conference on higher education policy and practice.

  • Seattle Public Schools (Seattle) — $40,000 to fund a coordinator position to ensure that low-income students take advantage of College Bound scholarships.

  • South Puget Sound Community College Foundation (Olympia, Wash.) — $31,500 to provide scholarships to members of the All-Washington Academic team.

  • Excelencia in Education (Washington, D.C.) — $30,000 to support an educational initiative focused on increasing access to and success in postsecondary education for Latino students.

  • Admission Possible (Milwaukee) — $30,000 to provide low-income students with guidance and the necessary basic tools to graduate from high school and enter college.

  • Student African American Brotherhood National Headquarters (Toledo, Ohio) — $25,000 to support an annual leadership conference with a focus on the academic and social success of African-American males.

Through June 15, USA Funds will accept additional grant requests that meet its guidelines. For details, visit

Headquartered in Indianapolis, USA Funds is a nonprofit corporation that works to enhance postsecondary education preparedness, access and success by providing and supporting financial and other valued services. For more information about USA Funds, visit